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Today is Sunday. The 20th of July.

I woke up feeling anxious. Looked at my watch. 6:11. No need to jump out of bed just yet, so I lingered there in order to pay attention to the anxiety. What is this about Lord? Why am I feeling anxious? I lay there for about twenty minutes, just sort of inviting Jesus into the nameless fear and asking him to heal and deliver, all the while paying attention to what is going on inside of me and what it is God might want to reveal. Why am I anxious? What is going on down in my soul? Yes, this might be warfare. But it might also be something more. Something needing attention.

For the past couple days, I’ve been aware (again) of how I hurl myself at life. My ethic is “Stay on top of things.” This I have known for sometime. But the newer revelations have to do with this nagging sense of “I’m blowing it” (this is the G rated version). I often feel that I’m blowing it. I wondered what this had to do with the anxiousness. What do I pray, Lord? “Ask my life to come in. My life.” Yes, it’s about the life of God. So laying there in bed, I’m praying for the life of God to come in.

Later, I am saying my morning prayers. And what is becoming clear to me is how in my youth, through my wounds, I came to believe life is up to me, and how I turned to self-preservation through striving and staying on top of things. I felt I needed to repent of that, right now. I knew how the Enemy gets a stronghold in our lives when we come to these deep resolutions toward self-preservation (they are godless, whatever form they take). I did not turn to God in my youth; I turned to myself. It created an awful burden, to stay on top of things. Now I am anxious. Is there any real wonder why? It felt like a continuation of the prayer time in bed. Jesus, forgive me. Come into this. Cleanse me, heal me.

What was so right on about God’s guidance to invite his life in is that when we live by the life of God, he the Vine and we the branches, then we are connected as we were meant to be, and life is not up to us. So I prayed for the Life of God to come into all these anxious places.

Now, all of this is before breakfast.

Later I go into what we call the “bunkhouse.” It’s where the boys sleep when we are at the ranch. But it is empty. The boys left for home about an hour ago.  I am just checking around, making sure they didn’t leave anything and wham, I am hit with the fact that they are gone, maybe for the last time this summer. The bunkhouse is empty. Another season is passing. What follows hard on that realization is grief. How quickly they are growing up, how time is flying by. How it hurts to have them gone, to have this season passing.

I sit outside for a few minutes so as not to blow by this moment. It feels tender, and profound. I am suddenly aware of how hard I try to make life work, how fleeting life is, and how little I think about heaven. I’m remembering this feeling, this sense of something golden lost, and how it used to usher me into the realization that my hopes have to be fixed on heaven or I am just striving to make life work and setting myself up for a massive letdown. And loss of heart.
All of this before 2pm.

What I left out of this record was some rich moments of thinking about Jesus and our friendship, enjoying the hummingbirds, Luke and I looking at some mountain lion tracks, and a dozen other things.

And I find myself wondering – how much of God is there in a single day? I mean, holy cow. If we will but pay attention, take notice both of what is going on inside us, and around us, and talk to God about it…wow. How much is he bringing to us in a single day?

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About John

John Eldredge is an author (you probably figured that out), a counselor, and a teacher. He is also president of Ransomed Heart, a ministry devoted to helping people discover the heart of God, recover their own hearts in God's love, and learn to live in God's Kingdom. John met his wife, Stasi, in high school.... READ MORE

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